a peek inside the fishbowl

14 Jan, 2019

What do I need?

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

Thanks to everyone who reached out to us following the recent bus crash at Westboro station. We are all ok, thank goodness. Mark is the only one of us who takes the bus on a daily basis and that bus isn’t one he’d ever take. The bus station itself, however, is close to home and I pass by it regularly. I’ve been glued to the news and it’s entirely possible that I’ve now consumed too much at this point. I’ve tried to take a step away from social media today too. Facebook and Twitter don’t necessarily post items in chronological order, and those first reports and posts (“Oh my god there’s been a terrible crash in Ottawa”) have been appearing in my feeds on repeat. There is more news coming out every hour, it seems. They released the names of the three people who were killed. My heart just breaks for the victims and their families.



One of the best things about being an adult is that I’ve had a lot of time to figure out what works for me and what doesn’t, and what I need to do in order to be a happier person. If I’m feeling crappy I can usually figure out what I need and (er, water, food, sleep) and make it happen. That is, of course, unless the thing that’s sinking my ship is stress or things outside of my control, in which case this makes “getting over it” a little harder.

I want to tell a little story that’s related to this.

We bought new windshield wipers for our car recently. Our old ones were functional, but barely. They always left streaks across the glass (which, of course, were often directly in the driver’s direct field of vision), but the worst thing is that they almost always made a bone-rattling BRRRRAAAAAP sound whenever they were deployed in light rain, which was almost always.

Well, the other day, one of them came off and so Mark replaced them both. The new wipers are a DREAM. (I never thought I’d describe wiper blades that way, but there it is.) The windshield is now perfectly clean and streak-free. What’s more, the wipers are BLISSFULLY SILENT. I didn’t realize how much the old wipers were stressing me out until they were replaced. And now I wonder (a) what took us so long to replace them (b) what other small changes can I make in my life that will result in a big improvement to my mental health?

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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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